The Night Crew

The Night Crew

by John Sandford

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#1 New York Times bestselling author John Sandford takes all the action and suspense of his acclaimed Prey novels and heads west to the dark gleam of L.A.

A mobile unit of video freelancers, the Night Crew prowl the midnight streets to sell to the highest network bidder. Murders. Robberies. High-speed chases. For them, it is an exhilerating life.

But tonight, two deaths will change everything...

“With its pulse-quickening plot and attractive heroine, you’ll be hooked to the finish.”—People

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780425163382
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 06/28/1998
Series: Night Crew Series , #1
Pages: 432
Sales rank: 133,809
Product dimensions: 6.74(w) x 10.90(h) x 0.97(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

John Sandford is the pseudonym for the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist John Camp. He is the author of the Prey novels, the Kidd novels, the Virgil Flowers novels, and six other books, including three YA novels co-authored with his wife Michele Cook.


St. Paul, Minnesota

Date of Birth:

February 23, 1944

Place of Birth:

Cedar Rapids, Iowa


State University of Iowa, Iowa City: B.A., American History; M.A., Journalism

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

“With its pulse-quickening plot and attractive heroine, you’ll be hooked to the finish.” —People
“This is riveting, intense crime fiction...lean and mean...replete with bursts of black prose that zap the reader like quick video cuts.” Cedar Rapids Gazette
“A terrifying chase that doesn't relent until the final page.” St. Paul Pioneer Press
Sandford’s machine-gun style and his stylish new heroine make The Night Crew an experience worth repeating.” —Orlando Sentinel
“Exceptional...gritty...compelling.” —Cleveland Plain Dealer



Before the live chat, John Sandford agreed to answer some of our questions.

Q:  What are the first lines of literature or poetry that come to mind?

A:  To be, or not to be; that is the bare bodkin
That makes calamity of so long life;
For who would fardels bear, till Birnam Wood do come to Dunsinane,
But that the fear of something after death
Murders the innocent sleep,
Great nature's second course
And makes us rather sling the arrows of outrageous fortune
Than to fly to others that we know not of.

Q:  Describe one thing in life that you have done but are glad you never have to do again.

A:  Almost everything -- but I once solo paddled a canoe down the Mississippi from the source in northern Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico. Sixty-nine days of mostly misery, which I remember fondly, and would never, ever do again....

Q:  Can you recall the most sensuously indulgent meal you've ever had? What was it, and can you share the recipe?

A:  Nope. Not into food. Probably a candy bar someplace ugly. I have a deep-seated affection for Almond Joy -- despite their habit of being half-melted when you get them -- but I don't know why. Maybe therapy would bring it out.

Q:  How does journalism and writing novels compare? Are you still involved in journalism?

A:  The key difference -- and I mean this seriously, as it is the one problem that most journalists can't deal with -- is length. Most journalists are unable (for lots of different reasons, including boredom) to create a unified whole story that stretches out 100,000 words or more and takes months of actual writing time. I still do occasional journalism and would like to do more. I consider myself a newspaper guy on a long coffee break.

Q:  We have heard you are involved with an archaeological dig. How did you get started?

A:  Ah, my favorite subject. For the Internet-enabled, which I guess everybody here would be, check for an extended rundown, with pictures, of the dig. I've had a lifelong reading interest in history and archaeology (most recent work read: the three-volume Byzantium by John Julius Norwich), and in fact majored in history and lit in college. I got serious about archaeology a few years back, went around looking at digs and sites, last year spent some hard time on a dig at Beth Shean in Israel, and now I'm involved in a heavy way with a new dig at a place called Tel Rehov, which is a half an hour by car south of the Sea of Galilee.

Q:  What is it like?

A:  It's very hot, dusty, butt-kicking work, and totally fascinating. Last year we cleared the iron age walls of Beth Shean, which are the very walls (well, okay, maybe) where the Philistines hung the bodies of King Saul and his sons after they killed them in a battle near Mt. Gilboa.... This year we've got a bit of a mystery on our hands: a very large, untouched tel, obviously the remains of a city, but a city we know hardly anything about. We surveyed it this spring, found pottery from the bronze through the Ottoman eras, which covers the better part of 3,000 years...great stuff. And we're looking for volunteers -- see the web site.

Q:  The Night Crew is clearly not a Prey novel. Why? Are you currently writing a Prey novel, or do you plan to do something else for a while?

A:  I am currently writing a Prey novel. The Night Crew was meant as a break after eight years of Lucas Davenport, but now I'm back, and this one feels pretty good. I don't know if I'll go back to the Night Crew again, but it is a possibility. I liked the Anna Batory character, and Creek, and I'm not sure I'm done with them.

Customer Reviews

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Night Crew 3.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 30 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Anna Batory is a witty, tough, ambitious video freelanceer who roams around the streets of L.A. looking for shots she could sell to stations offering the highest bid. One suspenseful night that involves 2 deaths and an animal-rights activists. After a drug over-dosed teen jumps off a balcony, it hits one of anna's cameramen hard and takes off early. He turns up dead on a beach the morning and there is no real leads. She meets up with former L.A. cop Jake Harper, who is the high school kid's dad. He and Anna find mysterious connections between Jake's son's death and the death of Anna's crewmen. They continue to find clues that bring them closer to the psychotic killer. The book was a decent read, the story was slow to start though. The complex plot is also kind of difficult to follow. The story uses the 'damsel in distress' style also, that is used in tv and books everywhere. The book seems like anyother, nothing unique about it.
DubhGlas More than 1 year ago
While this book did grab my attention and hold it, I felt that it was not as gripping or as well paced and written as the books in the Virgil Flowers series or those in the Lucas Davenport series. Sandford is an extremely good writer, one of the best in his genre, but his female leading characters don't ring as true as his male lead characters. That said, an average John Sanford Novel is still better than most of the ones on the best selling lists.
GRACIE9492 More than 1 year ago
I love Sanford and I know this was an early one but I found too many mistakes in the plot. Too many unbelievable actions.
LSTEPH1967 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Reading Sandford's Prey series, I decided to read one of his stand-alone's. Just as good and could easily evolve into a good series.
sturlington on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
John Sandford is one of those rare authors ¿ a good one who writes about serial killers and other stuff I like. However, his recent offerings have been a bit of disappointment. I miss the ¿Prey¿ series, featuring that hard-hearted, role-playing-game-designing detective whose name I can¿t recall. Never mind ¿ this book is entertaining, a good brisk read. I only wish that it had dealt more thoroughly with the main characters¿ interesting occupation ¿ a freelance film crew who spends their nights filming news footage that they then sell to all of the television stations.
debavp on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I have to say I was disappointed in this one. The premise of what the Night Crew does was interesting, probably more so at the time of publication than by current day standards, but still intriguing. None of the characters were likeable to me, and that was just based on reader¿s instinct, because none were developed to any level of being able to confirm it. It comes across as the beginning of a series and it¿s probably just as well it didn¿t become one.
readafew on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
We follow a 'Night Crew' a group of people who spend thier night chasing stories trying to get the BEST piece of film in order to sell it to the networks.After one very 'good' nights work a parttime member of the crew is found dead. There seemed to be something linking it to the suicide caught on tape. Then other things seem to happen to suggest that the dead member was not the only one of the crew being targeted by this pycho. It becomes a race to find him before anyone else gets hurt.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is an ok read, but definitely doesn't sound at all like Sandford. Totally different style, different plot development, different dialogue. I would never have guessed he was the author. In fact, I'm wondering if he is! Nowhere near as good as the Davenport or Flowers books.
pollygirl More than 1 year ago
How anyone can say this is "fast paced" is beyond me. It almost put me to sleep and I had to force myself to keep reading (I don't like to leave a book unfinished even if it is awful)
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